One of the most significant drains on a household’s utility costs is heating and cooling. Compared to lighting and typical appliance use, the money spent each year to maintain a comfortable living temperature comprises approximately 40 percent of the bill. Studies show that the typical family in the United States spends upwards of $1,500 per year on utilities, according to data provided by the Energy Department. However, there are simple things that Fall River homeowners can do to reduce energy consumption and utility costs for heating and cooling by as much as 25 percent. The good news is that many of these basic repairs, tasks, and upgrades will keep your home properly maintained. Make sure to contact your local insurance agency in Fall River to update your Massachusetts home insurance policy if you make any significant changes. You might be eligible for discounts to your home insurance in Fall River, depending on the upgrades that you make.
Check for Leaks and Drafts
Nearly every home has that one room that is hotter in the summer and colder in the winter than the rest of the house. Unfortunately, that usually means that there is an air leak. Take time to check your whole home for leaks and drafts, which can typically be found around doors, windows, utility outlets, and appliances. If you feel comfortable doing the work yourself, you might be able to use some caulking from the local hardware store to seal up those drafty leaks. However, if you feel that the leaks are significant and might require a professional, consider contacting an insulation company and get a technician to perform a thermal scan. An experienced technician will be able to tell you the status of your home’s insulation, provide tips on minor repairs that can be made, or make suggestions for future upgrades that will make your home more efficient.
Regulate the Thermostat
In many homes, heating and cooling costs go up and down because the occupants can’t agree on a steady temperature for comfort. Someone is always too cold, while another is frequently too hot. Work together to determine a comfortable temperature and consider investing in a programmable or Wi-Fi-enabled thermostat. This will allow you to see if any changes have been made and make adjustments according to the weather forecast and other variables, such as being out of the house for work, school, or vacation. Maintaining a steady temperature and making efforts to reduce consumption by using blankets, sweaters, and socks in the winter while relaxing or sleeping and adding ceiling fans, portable fans, or dressing more comfortably in the summer can also significantly impact your monthly bill.
Check and Clean Appliances
Dirty refrigerator and chest freezer coils can cause these appliances to work harder and use more energy. Improving the efficiency of your appliances will reduce utility costs and help to increase the life of the machines themselves. Regularly pull out your appliances and clean underneath and behind them, taking care to remove dust from coils, plugs, and other essential parts. Check the temperature of your refrigerator and freezer to make sure they are maintaining safe levels. If they are not, you might require professional servicing or need to replace them. Do the same with your washer and dryer, making sure to regularly clear out the vents to prevent dangerous dryer lint fires. Many of these tasks are homeowner responsibilities that must be performed to maintain home insurance in Fall River. If your home were to be lost in a fire and it was determined that homeowner neglect was to blame, your claim might not be paid by the Massachusetts home insurance carrier.
Other Ways to Save
There are lots of other things you can do to ensure that your home is more efficient. Swap out regular switches for dimmers and use low-energy lightbulbs. Replace old appliances with energy-efficient models and adjust the temperature in your hot water heater. Fix any leaky faucets the moment you notice them, and consider setting a timer for shorter showers. You might even lower your water bill if you hand wash dishes as they become dirty and replace showerheads and toilets with more water-saving models. Be sure to speak with your insurance agency in Fall River at least once a year and update your Fall River homeowners insurance policy whenever you make a significant upgrade. The more you do to maintain, inspect, and keep your home working efficiently, the better it will perform for you while you live there, and the greater your real estate value will be when you are ready to sell.
Contact Paul Sullivan Insurance Agency to discuss your Massachusetts home insurance policy or get a FREE quote for new coverage. We can answer any questions you might have about home insurance in Fall River and the surrounding area. You can reach our team of friendly and knowledgeable agents by calling 508-678-9611.